Thursday, July 09, 2015

Wish Girl (2015)

Wish Girl. Nikki Loftin. 2015. Penguin. 256 pages. [Source: Library]
 The summer before I turned thirteen, I held so still it almost killed me.
Did I enjoy reading Nikki Loftin's Wish Girl? Yes, very much. It does have its melancholic moments: Peter is a troubled boy--the victim of bullying--and he becomes close friends with a girl dying of cancer. But overall, the focus is on the magical properties of friendship, art, and nature.

Peter and his family have recently moved to Texas. The dad is out of a job, and, his parents are fighting A LOT. But part of the tension in the family comes from everyone worrying about Peter. Why they are so worried about him remains a mystery for much of the book, though adults may guess early on.

It's true enough that Peter is troubled. But for Peter it was never just the fact that he was physically bullied in the past--and the present. It was the fact that he felt he was never heard, never understood, never appreciated for being who he is, accepted as is. It's this feeling out of place--even at home--that leads him into depression and despair.

So Peter may not be thrilled about every aspect of the move, but, he discovers a special place, a valley, I believe, that changes EVERYTHING in his mindset. It is in this place that he meets the wish girl for the very first time. And being a bit clueless, he doesn't catch on that she's got cancer and is in fact dying. But eventually, these two strangers become very close friends... and in that process he learns more about himself, how to be true to himself.

 I liked this one.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

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